Adolfo Perez Esquivel
Adolfo Perez Esquivel was the recipient of the 1980 Nobel Peace Prize. He is noted for leading protests against the Free Trade Area of the Americas and for alleging that the Argentinean police are forming children into paramilitary squads, an operation he compares to the creation of Nazi Germany's Hitler Youth.
Perez Esquivel attended the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes and the Universidad Nacional de La Plata where he was trained as an architect and sculptor. He then was appointed professor of architecture. For 25 years, he taught in primary schools, secondary schools and at the university level. He has worked in a number of sculptural media.
In the 1960s, Perez Esquivel began working with popularly based Latin American Christian pacifist groups. In 1974 he decided to relinquish his teaching as he was chosen as coordinator general for a network of Latin America-based communities promoting liberation of the poor through non-violent means.
When systematic repression followed Jorge Videla's military coup of 1976, he contributed to the formation and financing of the linkages between popularly based organizations to defend human rights and support the families of the victims of the Dirty War. El Servicio de Paz y Justicia , which he founded, evolved in this context, and served as an instrument for the defense of human rights by promoting an international campaign to denounce the atrocities committed by the military regime.
In 1975, Perez Esquivel was detained by the Brazilian military police; he was jailed in 1976 in Ecuador, along with Latin American and North American bishops; and in 1977 in Buenos Aires he was arrested by the Policia Federal, tortured, and held without trial for 14 months. Whilst incarcerated, he received — among other distinctions — the Pope John XXIII Peace Memorial. In 1980 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts in the defense of human rights. In 1999 he was awarded the Pacem in Terris Award. It was named after a 1963 encyclical letter by Pope John XXIII that calls upon all people of good will to secure peace among all nations. Pacem in Terris is Latin for 'Peace on Earth.'
As of 2003, he is president of the Honorary Council of Service, Latin American Peace and Justice Foundation and of the International League for Human Rights and Liberation of Peoples, based in Milan, Italy, and a member of the Permanent Popular Tribunal. Besides this work, he has published Caminando Junto al Pueblo , in which he relates his experiences with non-violence in Latin America.
Nobel Peace Prize
Pacem in Terris Award
World Social Forum
This is largely translated from the Spanish-language Wikipedia, which lists http://www.oas.org/EN/PINFO/WEEK/panelist.htm as a reference.
Esquivel at the official Nobel Prize site
Adolfo Perez Esquivel official site, edited by Juan Varni
Esquivel's Art - Stations of the Cross
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